Students of Film 196, Senior Project in Film and Video Production, will soon be debuting their short films after a quarter’s worth of labor and love.
“Each student is the sole author of their project,” said Larry Andrews, associate professor of film and digital media. “They write it, do pre-production, shoot it and edit in 10 weeks — it’s pretty amazing.”
The June 12 screening at the Media Theater will premier shorts from each of the 22 seniors who were accepted into the class after submitting portfolios of their work. According to Andrews, the class usually has only 16 to 18 students, but he said that there were a large number of deserving students this quarter.
Fourth-year Jeff Ponchick will be screening his project “Zombirella,” a “funky psychedelic zombie movie.” While working on the film’s title sequence and mixing its soundtrack, Ponchick described his short as a satirical twist on the phrase “you’re so cute I could just eat you up.”
Despite spending the quarter producing a film about the dead, Ponchick explained that he wishes to continue to pursue filmmaking after he graduates because it’s what makes him feel the most alive.
“It’s what I’m most passionate about,” Ponchick said. “I think it would be foolish of me to not follow it in some form.”
Andrews, who will become head of the film department in the fall, said that while this quarter’s projects are predominately narrative-based, there are also a few documentaries and experimental works.
Fourth-year Edan Mason will be screening his experimental film, “Qualia.” His project analyzes the relationship between sound and image based on the medical condition of synesthesia, in which a “crossing” of the senses is experienced. To accomplish this, Mason filmed different activities in front of a green screen, such as people playing handball, and used a computer program to translate the movement of the colors into audio.
Mason described his experience in the class as one of his college highlights, thanks in part to his fellow students.
“This class has probably some of the most solid students that I’ve ever worked with in any academic environment. We’ve really put our blood, sweat and tears into this event coming up,” Mason said. “It’s a shame that the rest of my college experience hasn’t been like this class — a small group of self-inspired students really devoted to their work. It’s amazing how much great energy is generated by just a little bit of dedication.”
The Film 196 screening will take place on June 12 from 7:30 to 11:00 p.m. at the UCSC Media Theater, M110. The screening is free and open to the public.